Governor McCrory Proclaims May As Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month
Posted 5/3/2016 11:30:40 AM
Raleigh – Governor Pat McCrory has proclaimed May as Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month to encourage drivers to share the road with those riding motorcycles and to remind motorcyclists to practice safe riding. The N.C. Department of Transportation (NCDOT), N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program (GHSP) will promote awareness of motorcyclists during May to help prevent motorcycle crashes, deaths and injuries on North Carolina roadways.
Motorcycle related injuries decreased in North Carolina with 3,618 in 2014 and 3,359 in 2015. Crashes involving motorcyclists also decreased from 3,783 in 2014 to 3,641 in 2015. However, motorcycle fatalities have increased 14.2 percent from 2014 (148) to 2015 (169). As the weather gets warmer and the days get longer, more people are on the roads, including more than 469,000 drivers licensed in North Carolina with a motorcycle endorsement.
“We want motorists to understand motorcycle safety challenges such as size and visibility, and riding practices like downshifting and weaving to be able to anticipate and respond to motorcyclist behavior,” said Don Nail, director of the GHSP. Our message is for all drivers and riders: Share the responsibility of keeping our roads safe—always share the road.”
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that 1,630 lives were saved in 2014 because of proper helmet usage, but another 715 lives could have been saved if helmets had been worn. A motorcycle rider not wearing a helmet is five times more likely to sustain a critical head injury than a helmeted rider. North Carolina’s law requires all motorcyclists to wear a Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 218 helmet.
The GHSP BikeSafe North Carolina program invites motorcyclists to participate in a free “Rider Skills Day” class that offer an assessment of current driving skills and advice to help make their experience as a motorcyclist safer and more enjoyable. For more information, including a full schedule of classes, visit the BikeSafe North Carolina website.
The NCDOT and GHSP offers the following important safety tips to motorcyclists and other drivers:
Wear a DOT-compliant helmet and other protective gear
Obey all traffic laws and be properly licensed
Use hand and turn signals at every lane change or turn
Wear brightly colored clothes, gear, and reflective tape to increase visibility
Obey the posted speed limit
Never ride distracted or impaired
Share the road. Motorcyclists have the right to a full lane
Stay alert. Be aware that motorcycles can be easily hidden in a car's blind spot; take an extra moment to thoroughly check traffic when changing lanes, especially at intersections
Always signal when changing lanes or merging with traffic
Keep a safe distance. Allow more following distance – three to four seconds – behind motorcycles
Be cautious. Be aware that not all turn signals on a motorcycle are self-canceling, thus some riders sometimes forget to turn them off after a turn or lane change
Obey the posted speed limit
Never drive distracted or impaired
View the proclamation here.
View on NCDOT.gov
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